December 04, 2013 - Many of the boys and girls at Lakeville Elementary School sprouted thick, black mustaches last week.
No razor can tame these mustaches at Lakeville Elementary. Front row (from left): Dominic DeGrouchy, Logan Louchart, Christopher Baksi, Jack McDonough, Anna Terenzi and Isabella Makarewicz. Middle row (from left): Jasmine Brock, Addison Lester, Mateo Anderson and Brody Pollard. Back row (from left): Spencer Laursen, Tony Verbeke, Ava Collier, Maddie Day, Bella Murray and Jenna Mehlberg. And in the very back is Lakeville resource room teacher Dave Herrick. Photo by C.J. Carnacchio. (click for larger version)
But it wasn't because the boys leapfrogged into puberty or the girls got a hold of some testosterone shots.
They sported the stylish lip whiskers on Nov. 26 as part of Movember, a global charity that raises funds to support men's health programs that combat prostate and testicular cancer along with mental health challenges.
Movember encourages men to join the health awareness movement by growing a mustache (or Mo) for the 30 days of November. Each man must begin the month with a clean, smooth upper lip, then grow and groom their mustache while seeking donations from friends and family members.
At Lakeville, those who couldn't grow soup-strainers were able to buy them.
"We sold mustaches today," said Lakeville resource room teacher Dave Herrick, captain of Oxford's Movember team. "We charged 50 cents a mustache. A lot of kids were buying two and three mustaches."
Lakeville's mustache sales generated about $90 for the Movember cause.
"Our kids were really excited about it, so we had a line out the door to buy mustaches," Herrick said.
Oxford's Movember team, dubbed "MOXFORD," consisted of 14 manly men who are teachers and administrators at Oxford's five elementary schools.
"It just seemed like something fun that all the males at the elementary level could do. There's not many of us," Herrick said. "Everybody shaved clean on Oct. 31, then we took pictures on Nov. 1 and we've taken pictures throughout (the month) to show how we've grown our mustaches."
Members included principals Jeff Brown, Paul McDevitt and Brad Bigelow as well as teachers Brian Luba, Bill Tucker, Tim Collins, Shawn Regan, Matt Robydek, Jon Hazlett, Peter Stremersch, Stephan Henning, Chad Boyd, and Mike Sudrovech.
The team raised $482.
"It's a good chance for the men to get together and bond a little bit," said Lakeville teacher Christine Vince, who supports the Movember cause because her father has been living with prostate cancer for about six years.
"Unfortunately, I think everybody knows someone, one way or another, that has been affected by cancer," Herrick said.
A man is 35 percent more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer than a woman is to be diagnosed with breast cancer, according to the Prostate Cancer Foundation.
Prostate cancer affects 1 in 6 men, making it the most common non-skin cancer in the United States.
To learn more about the Movember cause or see the MOXFORD team, please visit us.movember.com
CJ Carnacchio is editor for The Oxford Leader. He lives in the Village of Oxford with his wife Connie and daughter Larissa. When he's not busy working on the newspaper, he enjoys cigars/pipes, Martinis/Scotch, hunting and fishing.